Cat Nugget Necklaces!

Ok, I'm trying to start blogging again (it is has been YEARS!!) and I want to show more behind the scenes stuff, new pieces, etc.  

So.  Today I made these little nugget necklaces with tiny cats on them! :)

I've been playing with different cat ideas for a while, and this morning I was able to play with this idea.  It starts by cutting out all the little cat shapes.  I cut each of them from silver sheet using a jeweler's saw.  I wanted them to all be a little different so I cut them out freehand, meaning no template or drawing first, just the saw and the metal.

cat nuggets cut from silver sheet

Next I made some nuggets.  I like to use scrap sterling silver to create the nuggets, making little piles and then melting them together into a blob.  Once the blobs are cooled down I can flatten them with a hammer until they are the thickness and size that I would like.

silver scrap ready to be melted on a charcoal block

sterling silver cat pendants in progress

After those important steps were finished it was just a matter of soldering the little cats to the nuggets, adding the loop at the top, and then polishing. I like to oxidize the silver first, so that all the little crevasses are black and the cats will have little shadows around them.  I like the details that end up showing as a result of the oxidation.

oxidized sterling silver charms, silver that is completely black

I love the character these little guys have, and I hope there are other cat lovers out there who love them too!  

silver cat charms handmade by Kathryn Riechert

Now available in my shop: